After winning their second straight road game against Central Michigan, the men's basketball team is now 3-0 and officially has its most successful start since the 1998-99 season. As a team, the players are working well with one another, while staying aggressive, and effectively communicating on the court.
Davis has played a crucial role for the team thus far, having scored at least 23
points in each of the first three games, making him the first player to do so
since the 1987-88 season. Davis discusses his feelings about the team's early
success, his role as a leader and how his preparation for this season has given
him the confidence to lead the team to victory.
Q: As a player, you've had the best start since the 1987-88 season. Did you expect to do so well offensively this season?
A: I did set high expectations for myself as player, but at the end of the day I not only want to be successful for myself, but also my team. I put in a lot of hard work this summer to be sure that I was in the best shape possible, and having won the WCC Newcomer of the Year award last season, I came into this season pretty confident. With the departure of Jordan Baker and Lorne Jackson, I really knew I had to step up this season offensively, and make sure that I was positively leading the team in the right direction.
Q: Last season you were 0-for-2 for three-pointers and now you are 4-for-4 after having only played three games. What have you done to improve your shot since last season?
A: Last year I struggled a lot with my shot, and since last season ended, Coach (Bryant) Moore and I have worked a lot on my shot. Not so much on my release, but just on how I shot the ball. I did a lot of work on my own this summer. During the time when I was at home I shot a lot of jumpers and focused on changing my form and making sure that my shots were coming out clean. Last year my shot was like a slingshot, whereas now it's become more natural for me. Coach Moore put a lot of time and effort into helping me improve so I definitely owe him a lot, and my level of confidence this season compared to last season is at a whole new level. With the amount of time I have put into improving, I expect myself to be making these three-pointers, and I hope to continue being confident and making those shots.
Q: You have experienced a lot of growth since last season and you credit a lot of your success to the training you did over the summer. What was different about your summer training for this season?
A: Our strength and conditioning director, Matt Young, really helped me a lot. There was a lot of talk about him going into the summer about how tough he was, and he completely lived up to his reputation. During our training this summer we had what we called the "adjustment period" which was the time that our bodies had needed to recuperate and adjust to the new level of strength training that we were being exposed to. As much as I hated waking up at 6 a.m. and lifting all the time, it really has positively affected the team and the shape that we are in. I feel like I can run faster, jump higher, and overall I feel a lot stronger.
Q: Brendan Lane has been another key player this season, and you two complement each other well on the court. What are your thoughts about how you two work together as teammates?
A: Brendan brings a lot of size to the team, and he is actually very athletic. I depend on him a lot with rebounds, and that has helped me out a lot so far this season. We both are unselfish players, so we work well together in that respect, and right now we haven't been getting double-teamed too much so that has been really helpful in regards to scoring points. We also understand each other well and communicate effectively, which makes the game a lot easier for the both of us, allowing us to play at our full potential.
Q: How is the team different this season, and what's making the team so successful?
A: The people and the coaches this season are really great. Training with Matt Young this summer really started this new mentality for the team. Summer training forced us to be mentally strong, and rely on one another for support. The summer not only helped us in regards to strength but it also connected the team closer as a unit, allowing us to become a really a tight-knit family. This all has translated onto the court for us this season and we all want to see each other succeed and make this season a winning one.